If you’ve ever had to go get something from your shed on a cloudy day or at night having some outdoor shed lighting ideas ahead of time would certainly have come in handy now. Or perhaps you just use your trusty Bic lighter for some light, however if your storing lawn equipment and gas that can be a real big risk of blowing yourself up.
In this article I’m going to go over some outdoor shed lighting ideas, starting with “natural lighting options”, “artificial lighting”, “solar powered shed lighting ideas”, “battery powered shed lighting” and “110 volt lighting”.
Choosing the Best Outdoor Shed Lighting
The type of shed lighting you use will be dependent on the size of your shed, and where you have placed it and of course if you’re going to be using your shed in the evening and how long you’re going to be there. And of course what your budget is, running a power line from your home can be expensive, if the shed is near your house an extension cord may work, but it’s not a good long term solution.
Outdoor Shed Light Ideas and Solutions
1] Natural Light
The whole idea of using natural light is getting the sun’s natural light into your storage shed by using windows, doors with glass in them and skylights to bring the light in. When locating your shed on your property take into consideration the best place that will allow the most natural light. Let’s take a look at the 3 ways you can get natural light into your shed:
– The Design of Your Shed… Building a shed that has higher walls at one end to provide a sloping roof can be a great place to put in some windows or plex glass panels to let the light in and the higher wall upper space is not that usable and great to shed some light, even moon light on a clear night can be helpful.
– Skylights… An excellent way to bring light into your shed without having to lose any wall space. The most common sizes are 2’x2’. 2’x4’ and 4’x4’. You can check Amazons full line of skylights here.
Another great skylight which you’ll find in many homes is the “solar tube” perfect for installing on a shingled roof and lets in a lot of natural light. Its unique bubble design allows it to receive light in all directions through the top tube which uses a reflective finish that increases the light it collects and reflects it into the interior of your storage shed. You can checkout the “Solar LightBlaster for Shingled Sheds” yourself here on Amazon.
The “solar tube” works best if you install it as close as possible to the ridge of the roof, make sure you install it so it doesn’t go past the ridge cap of the roof to prevent leaking. If you have a metal roof there are solar tube skylights for using on metal roofs. These usually come with a template to mark out where you should cut for installation, be sure you don’t install it where there’s a roof rafter, but between the rafters.
– You get lighting for free during daylight hours.
– Won’t require any wall space to install.
– Some models of skylight will open for ventilation.
– Only provide light during daylight hours.
– If you’re going to use the plastic models be aware of possible cracking in really cold weather conditions. Check out the skylight to make sure the one you choose is designed for cold weather.
– Another problem is the skylight can be covered in snow; the solar tubes will work better in snowy areas because there round top design help keep snow from accumulating on them.
– Windows… These are consider to be the most common and least expensive outdoor shed lighting idea to bring light into a storage shed. You can get windows in vinyl, metal, wood and plastic and there are a Hugh number of sizes and colors to choose from. The main reason I like light windows is you can have them custom made to any size and shape you want.
You can find windows for sale everywhere and very often I find them in swap sheds and when you get them cheap or for free you can easily frame the wall in your shed to fit them. Windows also can be made from safety glass, Plexiglas and regular glass. There are some that open and have screens and security locks on them.
If you can put your windows on the walls that will allow the most light to come in, I have a window over the counter top and it works very well. Another idea is if your using metal roofing is to replace a couple of the metal panels with clear Plexiglas panels and you’ll be impressed with the amount of light that comes in.
Pros and Cons of Windows
– Provides lighting at a low cost during daylight hours.
– Windows that open allow for good ventilation.
– Add a window for extra light in a dark area of the shed.
– It also adds some ethically pleasing look to the shed.
– Takes up wall space, you can add a vertical window in the door and it will bring in light without using any more wall space.
– Increased security risk.
– Can be a privacy risk if you don’t want people looking in. You can use a obscured covering that will give you privacy without losing the light.
2] Artificial Light
Number two when it comes to outdoor shed lighting ideas artificial lighting provides light anywhere in the shed anytime you need it day or night. It’s not dependent of the sun or the sheds location to get natural light.
4 Things to Consider With Artificial Lighting
– Brightness… With the different options available you have a lot of choices with choosing the brightness level you require.
– Duration… How long will the light last and will be dependent of the type of source you pick. Also the number of hours it will be on as well as how much humidity and the inside temperature of your shed.
– It’s Efficiency… How much it’s going cost your power bill to provide the level of lighting you require in the shed.
– Light Temperature… How much heat does the light give off, normal incandescence lights get hot and emit heat, while LED lights operate cooler. LED lights use a lot less power than the old incandescence bulbs are provide more light for less wattage.
Incandescent Bulbs Vs LED Bulbs Vs CFLs
– Incandescent Light bulb… This is a bulb that’s has vacuum inside and uses a filament to glow and produce light. These use the most electricity and are the cheapest to buy.
– Compact Fluorescent… Is a bulb that contains a gas and needs much less electricity to make it work. These cost more than the incandescent bulbs and will take a couple of minutes to reach full intensity.
– LED [Light Emitting Diode]… These bulbs need much less electricity, as well they don’t produce the heat that an incandescent bulb does. The LED bulbs will last the longest and provide light while using much less wattage and power; however they are the most costly.
Wattage and Lumens
Wattage is how much electricity the bulb uses, the more watts the brighter the light, incandescent bulbs are sold by the wattage. Lumens are how much light the bulb gives off and the higher the lumens the brighter the amount of light. LED bulbs are sold by the amount of lumens they provide.
So basically the higher the wattage the more cost to operate the bulb, the amount of lumens is how much light a bulb will produce. An example would be a 60 watt incandescent bulb can make 650 lumens of light as compared to an 8 watt LED bulb that will make 650 lumens of light while using a lot less wattage.
While the LED bulbs do cost more they are a lot cheaper to operate, I changed most of the bulbs in my home to LED one room at a time and the savings is quite noticeable. If you’re interested in learning more about bulbs and how much you can save, you can read my article “How Much Money Do Energy Efficient Light Bulb Save?” This article is on my other website “Home Automation Gadgets” and you can read it here.
3] Solar Powered Outdoor Shed Lighting Ideas
Solar powered shed lighting uses the sun’s rays during the day that charge a battery that will power some lights when the sun has gone down. You can typically expect a full battery to operate your lights for hours and the time will depend on how many lights you’re using.
You don’t need any power source, just a solar panel, relay and storage battery and of course you’ll need to mount the solar panel so it will get some sunshine. There are a variety of solar panel sizes so, choose the size that will provide you with the light you need.
– Can have enough power to operate security light all night.
– Can be set-up anywhere the sun shines.
– Simple installation.
– Needs to be in sunlight to completely charge.
– Cloudy days may not fully charge the system.
Here’s a great solar powered system… “Kyson Indoor Solar Light System” includes the solar panel, on/off switch with pull cord and remote control, light fixture and LED bulb.
Has built-in rechargeable 3.7 volt/2000mah Lithium-ion battery. When fully charged will operate for up to 8 hours. Comes complete with everything you need and the best thing is it’s not going to break the bank at under $50 bucks. Check it out here on Amazon.
4] Battery Powered Shed Lighting Ideas
One of the easiest ways to get lighting in your shed is battery power. There are a large variety of types that are fast to install and won’t need any wiring to operate. If you choose LED lights that are battery powered you’ll get brighter light and longer battery life.
Battery powered shed lighting may be a good option for you if you use your shed for mostly storage and don’t spend a lot of time in it. Most people access there shed during the day so lighting isn’t a real issue. You can check out Amazon’s full line of battery powered shed lighting ideas here on Amazon.
5] Electric Shed Lighting Ideas
If your shed is located close to your home you can opt to use an extension cord for lights and running a small appliance. There are heavy duty exterior extension cords available for outside use in different lengths…. Always choose the shortest cord you can get so you don’t have as much power drain. You can see Amazons full line of exterior extension cords here.
I have just looked at the top 5 outdoor shed lighting ideas and there are a few others. Whatever you decide on whether it’s natural, artificial or solar powered there’s good inexpensive option you can choose from instead of using a lighter or matches.
I hope you have found my article helpful and if you have any questions post a comment… Give the article a share too. Thanks for reading.